Rushville Republican

Columns

June 17, 2014

Speak up, it could save a life

You hear about it on a daily basis - drugs. Whether it is marijuana, heroin, pain pills or cocaine, more and more people are becoming hooked on these addictions and the sad thing is that most of the victims are young adults. Another sad thing about drugs is that most parents don’t know their children are doing this.

I was reading some statistics online and I was baffled with the results.

• 1 in 15 people who take non-medical prescription pain relievers will try heroin within 10 years.

• Every day in the U.S., 2,500 youth (12 to 17) abuse a prescription pain reliever for the first time.

• The 2007 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported 153,000 current heroin users in the U.S. in 2007. Other estimates give figures as high as 900,000.

• Drug overdose deaths in the United States have risen steadily since 1970. Painkillers actually kill more Americans than heroin and cocaine combined, according to the Centers for Disease Control, but heroin is still one of the number 1 killers of illegal drug users. One in 10 heroin overdoses ends in death.

I read some stories about addicts online and it was incredible to read how people get hooked on drugs so easily and quickly. I read a story about a girl named Alison who became addicted to heroin after using it one time. Heroin use has become an epidemic in the United States in the past few years.

Many people experiment with heroin thinking, “I’ll try it once or twice. I can always stop.” But those who start down that road find it nearly impossible to turn back.

“From the day I started using, I never stopped. Within one week I had gone from snorting heroin to shooting it. Within one month I was addicted and going through all my money. I sold everything of value that I owned and eventually everything that my mother owned. Within one year, I had lost everything,” according to Alison.

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